WINDMILLS: I have a modding dream. But I'm pretty clueless.


Mar 23, 2024
With thousands of hours in Civ 5, I've always thought the cost of windmills is a little too high, and I'd like to make a mod (or more likely modify someone else's mod) and end up with slightly cheaper windmills. Any advice??

As a senior citizen, PCs didn't even exist when I went to college, and I never learned much about coding. Ever watched a dog ineffectively try to lick peanut butter stuck to the roof of his mouth? Then you know what it looks like when I try to code something. I seem to remember about a decade ago, I followed some guide and created and published a single simple building mod for testing/learning purposes, but I can't find that guide again. I've published a few map packs to the workshop and wouldn't mind learning a bit of simple coding as a last resort. I regularly edit files in mods I download to change values, so maybe I can learn to do this on my own. Or if someone is willing to just create the mod I'm asking about, that would be cool too! Thanks!! Where to start??
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Grab "My Changes Mod" (link in sig) as a starting point. You then need to track down a tutorial on how to use XML to update a value in the Building (or Buildings - so long, can't remember) table - think LeeS has one linked from his sig.
Step by step guide to edit the cost of windmills via XML changes below. You mentioned that you regularly edit files in mods you download, and this is pretty much the same so you should be fine.

But like whoward mentioned, LeeS has an excellent reference for adding and editing buildings via XML changes ( If you want to make further changes beyond what I mention below, it would probably help you a lot.

  1. Navigate to your Civ 5 installation folder. For example, C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\Sid Meier's Civilization V
  2. Assuming you have Brave New World, go to the Assets folder --> DLC --> Expansion2 --> Gameplay --> XML --> Buildings. If you only have Gods and Kings, go to the "Expansion" folder instead of Expansion2. The rest of the path is the same. If you're playing with no expansions, then go to Assets --> Gameplay --> XML --> Buildings
  3. Open up the CIV5Buildings XML file in a text editor like Notepad++. You can just use normal notepad if you want, but it might be a bit harder to navigate and see things clearly.
  4. Search for "<Type>BUILDING_WINDMILL</Type>" to find the block of text that defines some of the main attributes of the windmill.
  5. If you want to edit the production cost of the windmill, change the number in the nearby line of "<Cost>250</Cost>" into whatever you want (should be two rows below "<Type>BUILDING_WINDMILL</Type>"). The number refers to the number of hammers needed to build the building on standard speed. LeeS's guide that I linked describes all of the various things you can change and edit here for each building if you want to make more changes.
  6. If you also want to change the cost of Austria's coffee house (windmill replacement), then you need to do so at Assets --> DLC --> Expansion --> Gameplay --> XML --> Buildings --> CIV5Buildings_Expansion.xml. Search for "<Type>BUILDING_COFFEE_HOUSE</Type>".
  7. Save the file and launch the game. When you play a game, the windmill should now have the updated cost.

Couple of notes on this method:
  • If you want to revert all XML changes and you're playing on Steam, you can just verify game files, and it will redownload all of the base XMLs.
  • These edits can work in multiplayer, but you likely need everyone to have the same XML changes on each of their PCs, otherwise you may run into constant desyncs while playing.
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